The Memphis Grizzlies Are Underdogs Yet Again In Round 2 Of Play-In Action

Posted on May 21, 2021

The Memphis Grizzlies are one step closer to making it to the NBA Playoffs. The team moves on to compete against the Golden State Warriors this Friday night in the second and final round of the Play-In Tournament.

Memphis Grizzlies win Round 1 against Spurs

The Grizzlies ended the San Antonio Spurs’ season Wednesday night in the first play-in round of the tournament with a score of 100-96. Memphis gained the lead after the first quarter and maintained it all the way to the buzzer, summoning the energy of their hometown crowd to seal the win.

Memphis’ FedEx Forum increased to 40% capacity for this event, ultimately selling the arena out to 7,019 cheering fans.

The win marks a feat for the Grizzlies, given their long rivalry with the Spurs. In 42 seasons of play, the Spurs have advanced to 38 playoffs and won five NBA Championships. The Grizzlies, on the other hand, boast 10 playoff appearances in their history. Seven of those post-season berths came between 2010 and 2017, although the most recent two attempts resulted in losses to the Spurs in the opening round.

Memphis has now gone three straight seasons without advancing to the playoffs.

They came close last year by advancing to the NBA’s first-ever Play-In Tournament, but ultimately lost to the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round.

Play-In Round 2: Memphis Grizzlies vs. Golden State Warriors

The Grizzlies can now add a play-in win to their list of accomplishments, but that’s far from good enough for the young, eager team. Memphis faces yet another tough opponent on Friday, when they head to California for the final play-in game.

Now seeded 9th in the Western Division, the Grizzlies move on to face the Golden State Warriors, the division’s 8th-seeded team. The Warriors lost to the Los Angeles Lakers 103-100 during their first round of play-in action.

As a result, the Lakers move on to take the 7th seed and face the Phoenix Suns in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. The Warriors will have to get past the Grizzlies if they want to advance to the playoffs as well.

Memphis enters this game with a renewed sense of confidence and an almost entirely healthy team. The only player who will be sitting out Friday night’s game is Sean McDermott, who continues to deal with a foot injury.

The Golden State Warriors certainly won’t be going down without a fight. And if Memphis intends to make it to the NBA Playoffs, a series of other tough opponents are waiting for them on the other side of Friday night’s game.

What are the odds?

Those looking at the Memphis Grizzlies odds will see that, once again, sportsbooks paint the team as an underdog.

The over/under for this specific game is situated at 221.5, which is slightly higher than average for the team’s previous matchups. Of the three games played against each other this year, the total score averaged out to 215.

The Grizzlies might be underdogs, but their recent wins have proven that this team is not afraid of getting scrappy. However, the Grizzlies won’t have the home court advantage this time. Steph Curry thinks that could make a big difference for his Warriors.

“It’ll be nice to be at home in front of our fans, take advantage of the moment,” Curry said. “Just have fun with it, don’t put too much pressure on yourself thinking you’ve got to be perfect, you’ve got to make every shot.”

If the Grizzlies can take a page out of the Lakers’ book and force turnovers late in the game, that could be all the team needs to quiet the Warriors’ fans and secure a win.

Those confident that Memphis can do so can head over to any Tennessee online betting app to put a wager down before tipoff at 4 p.m. CT.

Photo by Dreamstime
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Alec Cunningham

As a college athlete, Alec Cunningham played Division II golf at Tusculum University. She graduated in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Professional Writing. She then returned to her love of written word in 2000 after working in the music industry as a concert promoter, tour manager and artist developer. As a journalist, she's covered a variety of topics and currently specializes in Tennessee online sports betting and Virginia casino news. She served as a panelist at this year's All American Sports Betting Summit, discussing the ever-evolving role of women in the gambling industry.

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